Liverpool vs Hull City Preview
Liverpool will take on a resurgent Hull City on New Year’s Day at Anfield as they look to exact revenge for the humiliating defeat they suffered at the hands of the Tigers in the corresponding fixture earlier in the season. Liverpool are coming off back-to-back defeats away to Manchester City and Chelsea while Hull are hot off their 6-0 demolition of Fulham.
Liverpool have dropped off the summit of the Premier League and find themselves in 5th place following two controversial defeats at the hands of fellow title contenders City and Chelsea. In both the games, Liverpool had goals ruled out for offside and some 50-50 decisions went against them. They will rightly be aggrieved by the two 2-1 defeats, and will look to set things right when they face Hull on the familiar turf of Anfield.
Hull on the other hand have had a fantastic first half of the season and find themselves in 10th spot halfway through the season. Summer signings Tom Huddlestone, Jake Livermore, Jake Boyd and Danny Graham all seem to have gelled together well, and the team seems to be punching well above their weight. They will be heading to Anfield hoping to do a very famous double over the Reds.
Liverpool : No less than three of Liverpool’s players ended up injured in the aftermath of the defeat at Chelsea. Joe Allen and Mamadou Sakho had to leave the pitch early due to their abductor and hamstring injuries respectively, Henderson has seemingly recovered from the leg injury he sustained following a Samuel Eto’o challenge, and should be fit to start. The good news for Liverpool is that their captain Steven Gerrard should be fit enough to return to action against Hull, while Daniel Sturridge has returned to training this week.
With Sakho missing due to injury, Daniel Agger will have the chance to partner with Martin Skrtel, with Martin Kelly, Ally Cissokho or 19-year old Brad Smith filling in at left back. In midfield, The returning Gerrard will likely replace the injured Joe Allen in midfield while the attack will likely remain unchanged.
Hull City: Hull are likely to switch back to the 3-man defense that served them so well the last time these two teams met in the Premier League. With Soney Aluko, Aaron McLean, Stephen Quinn and Robbie Brady out injured, Bruce will likely field a back three of Curtis Davies, Alex Bruce and James Chester, with Ahmed Elmohamady and Maynor Figueroa as the two wing backs. David Meyler would partner Livermore and Huddlestone in midfield while skipper Robert Koren might be playing just behind striker Yannick Sagbo. Alternatively, Hull manager may decide to start with Danny Graham partnering Sagbo in attack instead of Koren in the hole.
Player to watch out for
Luis Suarez: The Uruguayan failed to find the net in the two defeats at Manchester City and Chelsea, and he would indeed be smarting from the ‘diver’ comments made by Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho after the match. He will come out with a point to prove, and like he’s done so often, he will look to do his talking on the pitch. Expect a cracking performance from him.
- Liverpool have won seven and lost none of eight previous home games against the Tigers in all competitions, scoring at least twice on every occasion.
- Hull City’s victory over Liverpool in December was their first victory over the Reds in any competition, ever (D4 L12).
- Hull City have scored as many goals in their past two Premier League games (8) as they had in the previous 10.
- Liverpool have scored at least three goals in each of their last six Premier League home games.
- Luis Suarez has scored 13 goals in his last five Premier League home games.
Facts courtesy : Yahoo Sport
Liverpool have been in devastating form at home this season, and with the added incentive of overcoming back-to-back defeats, they will undoubtedly go on the offensive from the get go. Hull may find this too be a very different challenge from the one they faced against Fulham, and one goal may easily lead to two or three for Liverpool.
Liverpool 3-1 Hull City